Travel Plans

At this time of year, when there is frost on the ground every morning, and a chill wind blowing, my thoughts always turn to travelling. Now, more than ever, getting away from the rat race is very important to me. It always was, but recent events have made me realise that you only get one chance, and you don’t know when it will be taken away from you. So I believe you should do everything you can to enjoy the time you have.

For me, the work/homelife balance is key to happiness. It has to be very heavily weighted in favour of home. That’s the way I have always rolled! I live for the evenings and weekends that I get to share with my husband, and the travels with him or with my friends. I go to work to make money to pay my bills, and to fund my travels, and maybe one day – if I am very lucky and get the break I need – I won’t have to do that anymore.

This year I have already booked all of my annual leave days – and have something planned for every one of them! I have never done that before, but I find that this year I need concrete plans to look forward to. I am going to Egypt in June to lie by a pool for two weeks, then to the US to visit dear friends at the end of July. October is my good friend, Sue’s, special birthday (oops, I almost gave the game away there and told you which birthday! LOL) and we are off to our favourite city, Dublin, to celebrate in style. Well, it’s actually her birthday in September, but we are celebrating it in October, which is the only time we could co-ordinate it all. We are going to be staying in a gorgeous apartment in Smithfield for a week, and in the middle of it all we will stay at the penthouse suite at The Clarence Hotel for the third time! I can’t wait. More about all that later.

Today I booked a trip to go and stay with Sue for the weekend at her home in Carlisle. It’s been a while since I was there. I usually visit quite regularly and have done for almost 20 years, but last year we had so many trips booked together that we did not get together at her place. So, I will be going on 3rd May and staying over for two nights.

Booking the train was a farce! Initial enquiries told me that the total fare was about £133!!! But experience told me that if I did my trip in stages (from Stoke to Manchester, then Manchester to Carlisle… then Carlisle to Manchester, Manchester to Stoke on the return day) I could probably get it cheaper. After much tapping of keys and to-ing and fro-ing, I finally got a total fare of £36, which was ridiculous. Why did the search and booking engine not do that for me automatically!? They seemed proud enough to tell me, at the end of my booking, that I had saved £97!!

Anyway, it is all done now, and I am really looking forward to going. Sue and I always have a lovely time chilling out. We are both very like-minded when it comes to rest and relaxation, and we both very much enjoy food and wine and great company.

Something else for the diary! I love to fill it up.